| By Long Island Tennis Magazine Staff
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In the past, the U.S. Open has been dominated by Americans. Legends of the game, including Pete Sampras, John McEnroe and Jimmy Connors on the men’s side, and Chris Evert and Tracy Austin on the women’s side, have all left Flushing Meadows victorious on more than one occasion.

In recent years, the men’s draw has been dominated by Roger Federer of Switzerland. He has claimed the men’s singles title as his own, as he has won the last five U.S. Open titles. Hopefully, this year some of the American hopefuls will make a run at the championship. Here are the best American hopes for a shot at walking away with the U.S. Open crown in Flushing Meadows.

Men’s singles

Andy Roddick
The 2003 U.S. Open champ and crowd favorite, Andy Roddick is the last American man to win a U.S. Open title. He started 2009 strong, opening the year 26-5. He is currently ranked number six in the world and will be looking to better last year’s loss to Novak Djokovic in the quarterfinals.

 

James Blake
James Blake has struggled a bit in 2009 and his ranking has dropped to 16th in the world. He has started 2009 by going 15-11. Last year at the Open, he lost to fellow American Mardy Fish in the third round. With the help of the J-Block and the partisan American crowd, hopefully Blake can make an exciting run this year.

 

Mardy Fish
The year 2008 was Mardy Fish's best result at the U.S. Open, as he reached the quarterfinals before falling to Rafael Nadal. This year, he is 16-12 and his ranking has improved to 25th in the world. Fish is looking to build on last year’s run and take another step forward.

 

On the women’s side, Serena Williams is the latest American power and has taken three championships, including last’s year’s U.S. Open title, when she defeated Jelena Jankovic in the finals. This year, Serena will enter as the defending champion and leads the list of American hopefuls on the women’s side.

Women’s singles

Serena Williams
Defending champion Serena Williams comes in currently ranked as the number two player in the world. She has won the U.S. Open title in 1999, 2002 and 2008. Serena already has one Grand Slam this year, having won the Australian Open, but will be hungry to repeat last year’s performance in front of the home crowd.

 

Venus Williams
The two-time U.S. Open champ is looking to get back to the top. She has had disappointing results in both majors this year, but is currently ranked number three in the world, and remains one of the favorites to win the Open. Last year, she was defeated by sister Serena in a thrilling quarterfinal 7-6, 7-6 and will be looking for revenge should the sister vs. sister matchup once again come to fruition.

The best hope for a U.S. title winner may be in men’s doubles. The defending champion Bryan Brothers (Bob and Mike) will return to defend their title.

Men’s doubles

Bob and Mike Bryan
Bob and Mike Bryan come into the 2009 U.S. Open as the defending champs and the number one-ranked doubles team in the world. They will come in as the favorites and will be looking to capture their third U.S. Open title.